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tv   The Last Word  MSNBC  November 4, 2013 7:00pm-8:01pm PST

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since he wouldn't answer my questions years ago about the civil rights act. but he may finally feel pressured to answer questions from his hometown press. this may yet be a growth experience for the young freshman senator. we shall see and we hope so. now it's time for the last word with lawrence o'donnell. >> on this night five years ago i was in chicago watching barack obama's presidential campaign make history. he is still campaigning to make the affordable care act a success. >> just remember this, i have run my last political campaign. >> policy versus politics versus plans. >> but i have got one more campaign in me. >> is obama care on life support in the president is hoping that this is the right medicine. >> we have just got to keep on working. >> time and time again. >> we heard it on the sunday shows and this morning. >> the other news that people
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are focused on. >> 3.5 million people have gotten cancellation notices. >> notices that some americans have gotten. >> just five% of americans. >> there has been so much noise and misinformation. >> a majority of those folks will get better coverage. >> they will do better. >> better coverage than they have ever had before. >> making the insurance market better for everything. >> they know that the clock is ticking. >> the american people don't want the government to shut down and they don't want obama care. >> policy versus politics versus plans. >> ideology matters more than elect bltd. >> the thing that has held the republican party back in the obama era. >> the whole country is looking to new jersey for leadership. >> we have to govern something. >> a growing frustration within both political parties. >> washington is just constipated. >> with regards to what has gone on in washington. >> with the shut down, if you will. >> the shut down was so magnificent. run beautifully.
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i'm so proud of these republicans. >> i thought it would not be effective and it was not. >> is there not a time where you wish you would have voted for mitt romney. >> i always like to start with a joke. >> five years ago tonight, barack obama was elected the 44th president of the united states. he spoke to supporters at the organizing for action summit to remind them what winning the white house was all about and tell them he has one more campaign in him. >> i promise that by the end of my first term, i would have passed health care reform into law. i would have signed that bill. and thanks to your help, we did that. we got it done. [ applause ] let's face it. a lot of us didn't realize that passing the law was the easy part.
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change isn't easy, period. change in this area is especially hard because it touches on everybody. everybody's lives are impacted and it's a very personal issue. you know? and when you're undertaking something this big, this important like health care reform, we knew we were going to get resistance. maybe not. maybe not to the same degree as we have gotten, but there is a reason why this has not gotten done before. and by the way there is a reason why the opponents of this law have never been able to actually offer a better alternative. all right? initially they said they would. we're just going work on it and fix things that are not working
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the way they should be. we're going to smooth this thing out and we're going to keep on going. we're going to keep on going because it is too important to too many people not just in this generation but in future generations and we have got to make sure that we stay on track to make this work. [ applause ] just remember this. i have run my last political campaign. i'll tell you what, i have got one more campaign in me. the campaign to make sure this law works for every single person in america. i'm asking for your help. >> joining me now are msnbc analyst and eric stern the deputy secretary of state of montana and a former senior advisor. eric is is a contributor to e.j., the president is making it very clear there that this time passing the bill is not enough. that this is a law that needs to
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be campaigned for while it is already written into law. >> right. because of the resistance to this has continued at every level. there are many reasons some of them the administration's fault for sure that the exchanges have had so much trouble. but it's also difficult because states are supposed to run the exchanges. the states that are running them, a lot of those are going just fine but the federal government got stuck with a giant group of 30 states that they have got to run an exchange for. that's part of the problem. every single thing that goes wrong, anyone who gets a policy cancelled, this becomes may jr. news for opponents of the law. i think all of that is noise that distracts from the larger debate. do you think that the government has a role helping people who can't afford to buy insurance or not. the opponents have not come up with an article terntive because
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fundamentally they don't believe in this expanded role for government. obama does and he will have to keep campaigning on it. >> eric, you were one of the first debunkers about the accounts of how obama care has ruined my life. you got into the details of it to discover that they really were not well versed in what obama care actually meant to them. i have been looking at every one of these how obama care hurts me stories. i probably haven't seen them all but eric, i haven't seen one that doesn't have a perfectly reasonable explanation nor the story that the people are telling. have you found what you would call real, you know, negative outcomes for people under obama care? >> no, i haven't. the six people that hannity had
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on his show was a total set up and fraud. i have called others in media and no, there is always an explanation that you didn't hear when they were on fox news or whatever right wing outlet they were on. it's really unfortunate. and you know, i think what e.j. just said, he's right on the money. somebody once said lead, follow, or get out of the way. republicans are in the way. that's all they have done is get in the way and they need to get out of the way right now. >> let's listen more to what the president said tonight about the exchanges. >> as long as the website's not working the way it should it makes it harder for you to help them get coverage. i'm taking responsibility to make sure that it gets fixed and it will be fixed. we're working overtime. >> i want to remind everybody that they can still apply for coverage by phone, by mail, in person and remember, we're only one month into a six month open
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enrollment period. everybody who wants to get insurance through the marketplace, they will be able to get it. it eegs not as if there is -- this is is a one day sale or something. right? so we have just got to keep on woshing. >> clearly there is a choice to be made in the white house in a situation like this. send the president out there to talk about other things or send him out there to talk about the biggest problem they have. do not duck it, go straight at how is the exchange working and how can we make it better and what do we do while we're fixing it? >> i think they will do a little bit of both. they want other issues on the table. they are going to talk about immigration reform. he can't duck this one because it's going to be in the news anyway. he is the best guy to carry the message that this thing can work and it's going to be the most
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important achievement of his presidency. and the shame of having messed up the exchanges is some of these stories would probably go away if people had easy access to figure out what can i get a policy for? how much is it going to cost me and how much is the subsidy going be. a lot of people with lower income discovered they actually paid less so you need that exchange running but you need the president out there. he has got to be aggressive. there is no alternative. >> let's listen to the president talking about the cancellation of some people's insurance policies. >> one of the reasons we took up health care reform is to protect the underinsured or badly insured. sometimes they don't know how vulnerable they are. it tushes out that a whole bunch
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of things that people think are covered are not covered. we did this to put to an end the days when the individual market had almost no standards. every year thousands of americans would be dropped from their coverage. people are acting like this is some new phenomenon. every year there was churn in this market. >> eric stern, how is it working so far in montana? >> we're on the federal exchange so it's working here as it is in the rest of america that's on the federal exchange. the tea party controls our legislature and there was a movement to allow montana to have our own exchange and put it together on our own. we basically, tea party said no so the legislature voted it down so we're having the same struggles as everybody else. >> let's listen to what the president said about the so called nois around this story.
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>> there has been so much moise and miss information and this incredible organized effort to block the notion that everybody should have affordable health care. i think it's important to steb back and look at what has already been accomplished. a lot of times it doesn't make news. controversies make news. what's happened quietly across the country over the last three years has not gotten a lot of attention. a lot of people who are benefitting don't even know it. >> that's one of the challenges of this kind of law is when it works well, it doesn't even feel necessarily like the hand of government helping you, say, keep your children on your insurance policy until they are 26 years old. >> that's one benefit that i think people who are in that
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category are aware of. the notion that you're safe from being kicked off of your policy for some reason or lifetime limits or that you can be discriminated against because of pre-existing conditions, i don't think those things have penetrated yet to the public. in truth, democrats and the administration did not do a great job selling this law because it never polled very well. it may be laking lemonade out of lemons. with all this attention they may have to sell the plan in order to keep it going and people might finally then realize what's actually in it. >> what cautions would you have for reporters who are doing the stories about how the affordable care act affects me. >> you have got to ask questions and ask them carefully and you have to be comprehensive in the way you ask the questions.
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obviously if you're going to do it on the air you have got to call beforehand to make sure you have asked all the questions ahead of time. i have noticed that reporters have people on the air and letting them tell the story but they are not really digging down. they are not drilling down. there are going to be people negatively affected by obama care. it's not possible that every single american will have exactly what they had before and better. some folks will sacrifice small things but that doesn't mean we shouldn't have the program. you have to ask the questions and a lot of times i don't see reporters asking the questions and they get rolled over. >> thank you both for joining me tonight. >> good to be with you. >> coming up, a key step forward in ending discrimination against gays and lesbians. and what happens after tomorrow's elections for the republican party's identity crisis. last word exclusive for a north
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carolina republican who is switching parties. and rand paul is in the rewrite for trying and failing to rewrite the definition of plagiarism. and later, amazing video that you can only see here, two planes in a midair collision that everyone on board both planes survived. you have never seen anything like this. jackie: there are plenty of things i prefer to do on my own. but when it comes to investing, i just think it's better to work with someone. someone you feel you can really partner with. unfortunately, i've found that some brokerage firms don't always encourage that kind of relationship. that's why i stopped working at the old brokerage, and started working for charles schwab. avo: what kind of financial consultant are you looking for? talk to us today.
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new york democratic senator chuck shum ehren dorsed hillary clinton for president on saturday night. he told an iowa democratic party audience that it's time for a woman to be president and so tonight here in iowa and i won't get this opportunity again, i am urging hillary clinton to run for president. and when she does she will have my full unwavering support. a clinton spokesman told reporters what he said about her
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is very flattering. ultimately this is is a very personal decision that she hasn't made. of course as viewers of this program already know, hillary clinton has made that decision and is, of course, totally running for president. up next, the politics of passing a bill that bans discrimination based on sexual orientation. [ mom ] because we have people over so often, we've learned how to stretch our party budget. ♪ the only downer? my bargain brand towel made a mess of things. so goodbye so-called bargain brands, hello bounty basic. the affordably priced towel that's an actual bargain. watch how one select-a-size sheet of bounty basic is 50% stronger than a full sheet of the bargain brand. it takes a strong towel to stretch a budget.
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bounty basic. the strong but affordable picker upper. and try charmin basic. the strong but affordable picker upper. life with crohn's disease ois a daily game of "what if's". what if my abdominal pain and cramps end our night before it even starts? what if i eat the wrong thing? what if? what if i suddenly have to go? what if? but what if the most important question is the one you're not asking? what if the underlying cause of your symptoms is damaging inflammation? for help getting the answers you need, talk to your doctor and visit to connect with a patient advocate from abbvie for one-to-one support and education. >> the last time the senate voted on the employment non-discrimination act, the vote was 49 in favor, 59 against. tonight seven republican senators crossed party lines and
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voted for cloetture on the non-discrimination act. leading the charge were susan collins. nearly two years ago. >> thank you. i ask unanimous consent to deliver my remarks while seated. >> without objection. >> i would say that i have been silent for the tlast two years due to a stroke. i have risen to speed because i believe so passionately. i think it's particularly appropriate for illinois republican to speak on behalf of this measure in the true traditi tradition. men who gave us the 1964 civil rights act and the 13th amendment to the constitution.
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>> president obama wrote this. does it make a difference if the firefighter who rescues you is gay or the accountant who does your taxes or the mechanic who fixes your car? these companies know that it's both the right thing to do and makes good economic sense. they want to attract and retain the best workers and discrimination makes it harder to do that. the first openly gay senator said this. >> rights are sometimes intangible but boy, if you have ever been discriminated against seeking employment or seeking an advancement, it's bitter. and it's been a long, long fight but i think its day has come.
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it's just very exciting to witness and be a part of. >> joining me is congressman from colorado who is one of seven openly gay members. what are the prospects for this bill coming over to the house of representatives? >> i think it's good and getting better and better. it's a mainstream american value that people shouldn't be judged by who they love and who they date. at work, it's about how well you do at work, how effective you are and your efficiency. and frankly americans are wanting to make sure that we have a fair country and that people are not discriminated on the basis of something they can't help. >> let's listen to tom harkens speaking before the vote in 1996. >> the senate is about to take another historic step.
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1990, 23 years ago i stood here and we passed the americans with disabilities act extending civil rights to people with disabilities. here we are today taking one more step. no one should be discriminated against because of race, sex, religion and they shouldn't be discriminated against because of who they love, who they are, or whether they're gay, leez beeian, or transgendered. >> he gets quite a vote swing when you look at where the same body was in 1996. >> and those moving words, i think they really do echo where the country has gone and spent the last month in many places in the middle of america to the i-4 core door in ofrl.
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wherever you go you see businesses with us and supporting us. one of the central factors is it's good for business. interestingly enough, i just came back from lgbt. there are 500 major employers there. one of the things they were pointing to is the fact that they don't allow discrimination in germany and in the u.s. they did. . speaker bonner wants to move the country forward and get jobs and grow the country he needs to call a vote on the employment non-discrimination act. it's time. and you know, to be honest with you, the conservatives will see
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it collapse. this is going to be the last straw if they don't move forward with what we need today which is full equality and protection from discrimination. >> there would be some republican support this is what pennsylvania republican congressman charlie dent said today. he said it is my hope that this legislation will be brought to the house floor allowing the members to vote as they see fit and showing the american people that congress can work in a bipartisan manner on an important issue of fairness. how many charlie dents are there? >> we have 194 co-sponsors of the bill and five of them are republican. i think we need to make to case to speaker boehner that this addresses a real need in america in 29 states it's perfectly legal for your boss to fire you just because of who you date in your spare time. that is simply un-american. the american people are past that. more than 70% of the american
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people support this and we can't let them off the hook here. we need to demand a simple up or down vote after it passes the senate. >> stewart, i want to get your reaction to a tweet that harry reid sent out today. it takes no survey to reprove repression. >> absolutely. and i was very proud that leader reed quoted my uncle. the court issue that he worked on 35 years ago, it will be 35 year yea years the court issue was non-discrimination and housing. i really do think that it takes no courage to come out and celebrate diversity, celebrate diversity in your family, in your community, in your workplace. and number two it's important that we allow the american
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people in congress in the house to have a vote on this. and so, my final message to speaker bonner is ether allow the process to move forward or get out of the way. but we have got move forward here. >> thank you both for joining me tonight. >> a pleasure. >> we have breaking news now. police are searching for a gunman inside the garden state mall in new jersey. officials are calling the situation an active shooter situation. according to the new jersey chief of staff there are reports that there are multiple shots fired at the mall. police and emergency personnel are on the scene. wnbc reporter is at the garden state mall. she joins us on the phone. >> reporter: lawrence, we got here maybe half an hour ago to find that the garden state plaza
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mall, which is heavily used and very popular in northern new jersey, was flooded with police officers wearing bullet proof vests, heavily armed, and you could tell their sense of urgency. they were actively searching for the gunman who has not been found as we speak. we have heard from multiple witnesses who were either shopping or working inside the mall who saw a soul gunman dressed in all black wearing a vest, carrying a large rifle and wearing a black helmet making his way through the mall. one witness reported to me that she heard shots fired. another said that the gunman was firing shots straight up in the air. three other witnesses said that the gunman then headed to the nordstrom department store. it is unclear if anyone was injured.
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all of those details are still unfolding at this hour. what we do know is that they can't seem to find the gunman at this point. there are dozens upon dozens of police officers and law enforcement officials who are on scene here from all over the county searching for this man. they have not had any luck doing that at this point. we are also in the parking lot here where the perimeter has not yet been created and you have lots of people waiting for loved ones to come out of the mall. that hasn't happened yet either. lots of people on edge here, especially law enforcement who are searching for the gunman. >> do we have a time when the first shot is reported? >> reporter: we don't have an exact time. i believe we heard reports of it around 9:00, that's a rough estimate. the time line of events has not been laid out for us just yet. it has been difficult to get
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official information because they are still involved in this active search and they are quite busy at the moment. >> clearly the mall was open at the time that the shooting started. is that about the time that they would be closing there around 9:00? >> reporter: i don't know the exact time that the mall is scheduled to close. i would imagine that it is soon, perhaps 9:00 or 10:00. the mall was not as populated as it would be in the early evening. a number of employees were still working inside their stores when this happened. their doors were happened and they very quickly locked the doors. we heard from multiple employees who locked the front door and then ran into the back of the stores and crouched until they were told it was safe to come out. certainly very frightening moments. >> i'm seeing police vehicles in the shots that we have here at
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the moment. what i'm not seeing are ambulances. i'm wondering if you're aware of ambulance calls or any number of ambulance calls to the scene? >> you're right. i have walked around much of the mall parking lot and i have not seen any ambulances on scene either. it leads one to wonder how many injuries remain. i don't know how many ambulance calls might have been made tonight but within the immediate perimeter of the scene, i have not seen any ambulances nor have i seen any stretchers or anyone even reporting seeing anyone get ju injured. >> how many police agencies are we aware of that have reported to the scene? >> from where i'm standing and what i can see, i'm going to guess maybe a dozen. i can see the police, the police
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department, the several counties. it looks like anyone who was within a few miles of this area was called into the scene and they are gearing up in the parking lot, putting on their bullet proof vests and arming themselves and and approaching the scene as if it is a dangerous and active scene. simply flooding the parking lot here and heading into the mall near the nordstrom storm. >> we're getting reports of eyewitnesss clocking the beginning of the shooting at around 9:20 p.m. if that's accurate, the mall is listed as closing at 9:30. is that is an accurate report, then this probably began at a time when the mall was about as important as it could be while still being open. >> that would be quite fortunate if those reports are accurate.
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it makes one wonder what the strategy was for this gunman. of course, it's anyone's guess what the motive could be this shooting or in any shooting of this nature. generally speaking with this sort of thing we find that they look to have the most casualties as possible and not clear why this particular person would choose that time of night to open fire randomly in a shopping mall if they aren't going to to meet as many people. but why they do what they do is something for others to study long after tonight. >> do you have any reports about him, the shooter concentrating in a particular area or a particular store? >> we have heard that he made an appearance at the apple store and nordstrom. it's unclear what order he went to either of those stores but
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we're told that employees from talbot store saw him walking by. an employee said he waved at her and she had chills at that moment. and thank god that he did not target her and kept moving. >> what else did she describe about that kind of moment? was she completely aware of what she was looking at was a possible mass shooter in the mall? >> i think she did not really understand what was happening until after the fact. he walked by and it wasn't until after he kept walking that she heard the gunshots that her manager ushered her into the back of the store and they sat there crouched kwooiltly hoping they would not become victims. she said she was in a state of shock and couldn't believe this was happening at her mall. certainly we all hear about the shootings happening educational where and it was happening right before her. she felt that god was watching over her in that moment.
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>> and no one you talked to reported seeing any -- anyone injured in anyway? >> no. i have not spoken to anyone who has seen any injuries at all. that said, there is still, of course, could be quite a few injuries inside. we just don't know at this point. i have not seen anyone come out on a stretcher. i have spoken to maybe over a dozen witnesses and no one has heard reports or scene anyone who was actually injured. we're still waiting to figure that part of the story out. >> also joining us now, james cavanaugh. james, how do you assess what we know so far about this incident at the mall? >> the story is really still breaking.
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uniformed officers were loading up quickly into the car, maybe trying to respond to another location. the witnesses all said there was one gunman that they saw all in black moving through the mall. that's all they have at the moment. it looks like they're in the early stages of the operation, trying to isolate and locate the shooters. that's the main thing they have got to do. they move the people away. i also noticed s.w.a.t. teams gearing up outside. they are getting ready to follow in on the patrol movement for the active shooter response. when you hear the report, the official police report saying active shooter in the mall, what does that mean to you about what's going on inside that mall now? >> post columbine, we all trained in law enforcement to deal with active shooters in the way we treated the violent
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developing situations. the first two or three uniformed patrol officers that arrive, they quickly gear up and move in as a unit and they try to locate that shooter because usually they are in there slaughtering innocent people so they get to them real fast and try to take them down just like what happened at lax the other day and the navy yard as well. that's what is going on. patrol is moving in fast and trying to locate him and take him in and isolate him. the tactical teams are coming in on the heels of patrol. >> ida reports not having seen any ambulances in her movement around the exterior of the mall and we don't see any ambulances on the limited video that we have of what's going on over there. if, in fact, there are no ambulances there, that seems to me to be as positive an indicator as we could hope for.
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>> let's hope it's a positive indicator. sometimes emergency personnel like that will be kept back if there is an active shooting situation going on so that the paramedics or firemen are not injured as well. they go into hot scenes, too. i think it is a good sign, maybe the people were able to move away from this guy quickly. >> and did you hear that the report of that behavior where the -- he -- the shooter was walking through the mall before shooting and waving to someone working at one of the stores? what does that indicate to you? >> these guys get on a mission. look how prepared this fellow is going to be? all dressed in black. long gun. probably has a lot of ammunition, similar to the guy at lax. these people planned this carefully. this is not just something they decided to do yesterday.
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they acquire the ammunition, the firearms, the gear, the apparel. and they decide what they're going to do. and so, you know, they're trying to be in their minds it might work. look at the kenya mall shooting. the killers are going through asking people their religion and trying to decide if they will kill them or not based on their religious beliefs. >> the report that we now have is of multiple gunshots. the chief of staff said multiple gunshots were heard. i know there is an active shooter near the nordstrom area. the mall is being evacuated.
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she added that a s.w.a.t. team, law enforcement is on the site. so, this is pretty strong confirmation of multiple gun shots and the belief by the authorities that there is exactly one shooter in there. >> i agree with you. >> so that, for them to arrive at that conclusion where they are willing to say we believe it's one shooter, how solid does their information have to be before they go public with that? >> i think they have got to be careful. they had eyewitness reports of one shooter all dressed in black but you never know. you could have multiple people dressed in black. i think basically what they are telling us is we don't have any reports of multiple shooters. >> wnbc interviewed a witness that worked at a talbots store
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in the mall. here is what she told them. >> he started shooting up in the air. >> yes. straight up in the air. he looked directly in the store and strolled past. it was very terrifying. >> he looked you in the eye? >> yes, basically, yes. >> what were you thinking? >> i don't know if i'm going to survive. that was the first thing. i thought about my mom. so many thoughts going through my head. so scared. >> then where did he go? >> he continued to walk down towards nordstrom and you could still hear the gunshots going off in the air. >> james cavanaugh, what's your reaction to him firing gunshots into the air? >> well, he's sort of, you know, like on his mission, he wants people to see him. he wants to complete his killing spree or his actions. he is looking to see reactions from other people. who knows who he is trying to
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target, if it's employee related, if he's after certain people at a certain store and just wants other people to flee or could it be a complete terrorist act. we don't know yet. and sometimes when people don't handle firearms a lot, they are not experienced with them and constantly shooting them off. so sometimes you will see soldiers where they are all shooting guns in the air. it's an undisciplined handling of the weapon, really. >> we are saying he, bewe don't have confirmation that this is necessarily a man. but jim cavanaugh, that is the statistical probability in our experience with these kinds of events. this mall closes at 9:30 p.m. we have one report that the shooting might have begun just ten minutes before closing. what's your reaction to that
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information? what would be so late for this shooter and the opportunity to invade that mall. >> it's a great question, lawrence. and i think of that one myself. a lotd of times you see the shootings start early in the morning. lax is 9:00 a.m. and the person is worked up to the act all weekend or overnight. who knows what is going on in a guy's life. who knows what he was going to say. preparing what transportation he may have had or what he was doing. it's a little unusual that hour of night ten minutes before the mall would close. but, these guys sometimes have a fantastic plan i like to say that really dupt make any sense.
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he might want to get in there and barricade with a bunch of hostages. he might want to shoot a bunch of people and get on the stage and be laboring all night. it's really hard to say what's in his mind. it's kind of odd, the timing. >> nbc 4, new york, does have witnesses saying that it is indeed a man. they are describing the shooter as a man dressed in all black including a black helmet carrying a rifle and started firing shots inside the mall. but we still do not have any reports from any of the witnesses of anyone being hit, of anyone actually being injured in this shooting. and jim cavanaugh, as we just heard from that witness, the only shooting she saw was the man shooting straight up into the ceiling. >> well, and that's a great observation by the witness and as you pointed out, lawrence, it could be something as odd as a
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suicide by cop. in other words, i have dealt with those kind of guys before. they want us to shoot them. he could be going in there all dressed up like a mass killer not shipping anyone, shooting in the air, knowing at 10 minutes to 10 he will draw the large police response and be killed by the police. that's speculation clearly on our part. but like you say we don't have wounded. let's hope that nobody is juried there. >> if that's the case, what would be the next positive report you would expect us to be ab able to get. >> the best thing we could hear is that he is located, isolated,
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and isolated alone. those are the things that the commander on the ground wants to hear. he is located, isolated, and he is isolated alone. law enforcement is going to handle the situation and law enforcement is going to succeed because the only person that should get -- that could get hurt and should get hurt would be him. the police can protect themselves. that would be the best scenario that could come out. >> let's hope for that. we're going to take a break for now. we will be back with more live coverage of this shooting situation at the new jersey mall. an active shooter reported in the mall at this hour. we'll be back. (dad) just feather it out. that's right. (son) ok. feather it out. (dad) all right. that's ok. (dad) put it in second, put it in second. (dad) slow it down. put the clutch in, break it, break it. (dad) just like i showed you. dad, you didn't show me, you showed him. dad, he's gonna wreck the car! (dad) he's not gonna wreck the car. (dad) no fighting in the road, please. (dad) put your blinker on. (son) you didn't even give me a chance! (dad) ok.
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>> a black helmet. and he had the rifle straight up. and he was just shooting. he was just shooting straight ahead. >> we are rejoining our live coverage of the active shooter situation at the garden state plaza mall in new jersey. an active shooter has been reported by police to be in the mall. and a shooting that started sometime after 9:00 p.m. local time. the chief of staff at bergen county said multiple gunshots were heard.
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we believe it is one shooter. i know there is an active shooter near the nordstrom area. the mall is being evacuated. that is as much as we no. there are no reported injuries at this time at the mall. we now have reports from several witnesses who were working in the mall. it was very close to sloezing time of the mall. perhaps there were not as many shoppers as there otherwise would have been. more thab one has said they saw the shooter dressed all in black including a black helmet and shooting, firing straight up into the ceiling. we don't have any reports yet of the shooter firing at anyone and most importantly, we do not yet have any reports of injuries, but this is reported by police as an active shooter situation
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inside the mall. i'm rejoined by james cavanaugh, former atf officer. jim, as time goes by and we continue to not pick up any reports of injuries, is that -- does our hope for no injury increase as time goes by or might there be some reason for a delay in that information? >> i think it's a reason for delay. i would say it's static at the moment. the commanders are trying to get the information, lawrence, also. but in those situations, big walls like that are tough to deal with. you have officers spread out inside and you're trying to get all of that information, where did he go, who is wounded, what happened. the video that you just showed with the three officers and the long guns jumping into their cruiser, that's an active
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shooter team right there where patrol officers come together and they're going to engage the active shooter. they were changing locations so they may have been going around the other side of the mall or a place where he was spotted to try to cut him off or engage him over there. >> we're also getting reports that the helmet makes identifying the shooter very difficult and some indicating that it was perhaps a motorcycle style helmet with full coverage that would make witness identification virtually impossible. >> right. and he may -- if it's a motorcycle helmet it's not going to be bullet proof but he may see some identity hiding his identity benefit from it. he also may think it gives him so protection from firearms but clearly what you see with the helmet is preparation. there is a lot of preparation. so that means he has his mission
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and he's on it now. it's krit kl that he be located. >> jim, i assume i'm trying to get into the -- this mind set to the extend that we possibly can that a certain amount of that appearance is intended to look fearsome as well as possibly be somewhat protective for him? >> no, that's exactly right. i think a lot of these guys want to be fearsome. that's who they think they are. they see themselves that way. the lax shooter talking about how he's going to kill traitors. so he sees himself as this someone who is big and opponent so he's going to dress like he sees the police or the military dress and he's going to try to act that way and so he gets the dress, you know, the black clothing and so forth.
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of course he believes that's going to enhance his mission. he's going to be stealthy and ninja like things, which is really not true unless he's some harden terrorist who is practiced in the war zone, it's probably not going be real. >> james, thank you very much for joining us. msnbc will continue to monitor the situation throughout the night and will bring updates as needed. we are going to resume our programming here on the last word. a development in florida today that has national ramifications for the republican farry. >> no matter what they say it is not a sin to reach across the aisle. it is your obligation to work together. so yes, i'm running as a democrat and i am proud to do it. >> that's former florida
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republican governor charlie crist who has traveled the full distance from republican to independent to democrat. also abandoning the republican party is jason thigpen who says i refuse to be a part of an extremist movement in the gop that appears to only thrive on fear and hatemongering. joining me now, jason thigpen running to unseat walter jones. jason, thank you very much for joining us tonight. how long did you ponder this big decision about switching parties? >> to be honest with you lawrence it has been going on for a few months now. it have been a little troubled with some of the extreme changes in the republican party for quite some time now. you know, the government shut down was really the straw that
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broke the camel's back. it's a little bit disconcerting to see the radical changes in the -- so many of the extremists have so much control to steer knit that direction. what i have found is that principally and fundamentally, my beliefs are much more aligned with the democratic party. really it's the republican party that let me. >> and north carolina has taken an extreme swing to the right just this year. >> absolutely. with such drass tick changes in the voter restriction law that clearly has so much more to do with oppressing the right to vote for any north carolinian not to mention minorities, democrats, college students or anyone else that they feel will vote against them and against the right side of the republican
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party. it's actually very sad. north carolina was ranked number 11 in the country for voter turn out. and that's an extraordinary feat for the state of north carolina. what we want to do is we want to attract more voters but we can't do that by restricting their right to actually be able to vote. we want to get people educated and we want to get them engaged but we can't do that by regulating them and telling them we don't want them to come out and we don't want to give them a say so in who is representing them. >> jason, you're running against a republican who voted against reopening the government, voted against increasing the debt ceiling which had been a routine thing for this government to do when ever it was necessary. this was a dramatic contrast as i think you could ask for t isn't it? >> you know, i think you're exactly right. and to be honest with you, to go in there and expect the con stit
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wency to support -- support any representative that will go up to washington and vote to shut the government down is just deplorable. i just can't imagine what the $24 billion lost in the economy that americans will never see how many americans lost their jobs. it's really easy for u.s. congressman or senator to make a vote like that to shut the government down. a burn it all down philosophy when they're protected by the 27th amendment to the constitution. they're going to get their paycheck, but what about my neighbors and their kids and other families? >> as a war veteran you have faced much more difficult things than a political campaign. did i imagine this decision was not the hardest thing you have ever had to do in your life i'm sure? >> it's not been the hardest
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thing i have had to do but to be honest with you, i opened up my home here tonight to your show, to you. and to your crew. it has been absolutely wonderful. the democratic party has opened its arms and welcoming me and it's been so overwhelming and joyful and honorable for me and just heartening for myself and my family and our neighbors to see such opportunity to really be able to lead the constituents in our district and try to invoke more change and opportunity for our community, our state and our country. you know, when serving in the military, serving over in iraq, we are all standing there wearing the same uniform fighting in combat together. so regardless of race, sex, religion, gay, lesbian, rich, poor, it doesn't matter. we're there to support one another and make sure etch one
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gets home. why can we not continue to have those same ideals when we get home. >> jason thigpen, thank you very much for joining us. msnbc in new jersey. chris hayes is up next. good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. behind in the polls, desperate to turn things around, the republican candidate for governor of virginia, ten cuccinelli, the cucc, was on the trail today ripping obama care, convinced, it seems, that this will be the issue that can catapult him to an improbable victory tomorrow. probably not going to happen, but bashing obama care is good politics if you're a republican right now. and it certainly helps


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